Just got back from the California Wine Tasting Championship near Elk and had a terrific meal at the Victorian Dining Room in the Mendocino Hotel. With a name like that I was expecting a menu offering Veal Oscar and Chateaubriand. The cuisine however turned out to be California.
MsRev started with a warm spinach salad with duck breast, smoked lentils, and pancetta. The duck was medium rare and the dish in general luscious. I had heirloom tomato bruschetta with basil, fresh mozzarella, balsamic syrup, and crostini. Any dish with good heirlooms is a hit in my book, and this was a home run.
For entrees, I had pan roasted halibut with braised greens, rye gnochhi, and morel jus. Tasted every bit as good as it sounds. The halibut was cooked perfectly to my asking(medium rare) and the combination was divine. My wife had Bouillabaise with various shellfish in a lightly spiced saffron-red chile broth. This dish was merely good. I felt it could've used a little more saffron and an aioli on the side to add more richness to the broth. I believe we had a Navarro Reserve Chardonnay from Mendocino, but after all the wines we were tasting(I didn't do enough spitting), it all seems a blur. Whatever it was, we enjoyed it.
We finished with a slice of Ollalieberry(I have no idea) Deep Dish Pie served with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream. Wonderful way to end the meal.
As an aside, we stayed at the Greenwood Pier Inn, in Elk, about 20-25 minutes south of Mendocino. Charming, reasonably priced B&B on the coast with beautiful grounds, great ocean views, and a hot tub perched on the edge of the cliff.